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The power to curb antimicrobial resistance is in our hands. Every year 700,000 people die in the world as a result of antimicrobial resistance (AMR: antimicrobial resistance) and in 2050 it is estimated that this figure will increase to 10 million, placing it above the deaths caused by cancer1. In Spain alone, every year 35,000 people lose their lives due to infections caused by Multi-Resistant Bacteria (BMR)2. But what are antimicrobial resistance? How do they affect us? And, above all, what can we do to stop them?
Antimicrobial resistance is one of the main global health threats, making infections increasingly difficult and even impossible to treat1. The absence of effective antimicrobials is an obstacle to some of the major advances in modern medicine in treating infections, especially during major surgery and cancer chemotherapy3.
Aware of this problem and in its continued commitment to WHO, the biopharmaceutical company Pfizer, in collaboration with 8 of the main scientific societies, patients’ associations and health informants in our country, joins the World Awareness Week on the use of Antimicrobials through the campaign “The power is in our hands. Be a hero today and help save lives ”,“ The power is in your hands, be a hero today and help save lives ”, which seeks to promote global awareness and convey to citizens the important role that each individual plays against the AMR.
Citizen education, the first step to minimize the problem
Although AMR is a problem for health and development3 only 52% of the world’s population and 35% of Spaniards know what they are. However, once the definition of these terms has been provided, 85% of adults find them worrisome. These figures reinforce the need to change the global perception, and the urgency of a joint strategy to stop them.3.
Through this campaign Pfizer encourages the population to take an active part in the face of antimicrobial resistance by adopting simple measures such as proper hand washing, the responsible use of antibiotics or vaccination, which are in our hands.3.
1 O’Neill J. Review on Antimicrobial Resistan-ce. Tackling drug-resistant infections globally: final report and recommendations. May 2016. Available at: https://amr-review.org/sites/default/fi-les/160525_Final%20paper_with%20cover.pdf (Accessed 12 November 2021)
2 Spanish Society of Infectious Diseases and Clinical Microbiology (SEIMC), Hospital Registry of patients affected by bacterial resistance, Madrid, 2018, p 4 https://seimc.org/contenidos/noticias/2018/seimc-Registro_de_Pacientes_BMR.pdf (Accessed 12 November 2021)
3 World Health Organization (WHO), Antimicrobial Resistance, October 13, 2020 https://www.who.int/es/news-room/fact-sheets/detail/antimicrobial-resistance (Accessed 12 November 2021)
Eddie is an Australian news reporter with over 9 years in the industry and has published on Forbes and tech crunch.